Fifth Grade Cool

April 22, 2013 | My Jottings

This photo was taken by my father when my best friend Denel and I were in the fifth grade at Workman Avenue Elementary School. It was Easter season and we were ten years old.

Denel and I had just returned from Sunday School and we were holding the remainders of our ice cream cones from Baskin Robbins, which was right across the street from the church.


We were standing in the front yard of my house (that’s the garage window behind us) on Eckerman Avenue in West Covina, California. By this time Denel and I were starting to care about cool. Denel’s cool factor was much greater than mine; notice the knotted beads? Remember those? My sleeveless linen dress had a double-breasted navy blue and white checked matching coat that went over it. My mother liked classic, tailored clothes, and nice shoes. I had white patent leather, black patent leather, red patent leather, navy leather, tennis shoes, boots, sandals, penny loafers, and others.

I remember being obsessed with this song, and playing it over and over and dancing in my room. Oh, ho, what a visual memory that brings. My cool factor was still fairly low.

Three years later I was wearing bell bottoms, cropped tops, platform sandals and had discarded my plastic headbands and grown my hair quite long.

We have just learned that another big storm is headed our way, with a forecast of up to eight inches of snow. This has been one of the snowiest Aprils on record for us.

And I am still unwell, and will be going to the doctor Wednesday morning.

What a motley post this was. I was just walking by the office to go make a cup of tea, saw the computer there, and thought I’d sit down to say hello to you.

How old were you when your cool factor started kicking in?


  1. christy says:

    Still waiting for the “cool factor” to kick in.

  2. Just Julie says:

    I heartily disagree…why do so many of Savannah’s friends want to be around you? I think you are way cool. xo

  3. Ganeida says:

    Never had no cool factor. My nerd reading is pretty high though. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  4. Just Julie says:

    That would describe me then too Ganeida…nerdy, gangly and uncool. ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. connie says:

    THERES A COOL FACTOR!?!?!? I m still waiting too! Actually I think I was a bit rebellious when it came to coolness and was fairly comfortable being unique and a bit funky.
    I sure hope you feel better soon. Enough is enough already of this pesky illness! (and snow!)

  6. Just Julie says:

    You made me smile Connie! Cool factor? What cool factor?! xo

  7. Shari C. says:

    What a cute picture of you and Denel, Julie! Love it ๐Ÿ™‚
    Ahhh..the cool factor…I think I always felt that it took a lot of energy to try to be cool. I’m sure I had my moments but I always felt nerdy, no matter how hard I tried to disguise it!

  8. Just Julie says:

    Shari, I think you were one of the coolest, sweetest nerds I’ve ever known. Someone to emulate! xxoo

  9. Judy says:

    Still waiting for the cool factor. Tried it in college but a friend(?) from St. Louis told me it was easy to see I was from a small town. And to top it off, as I went to listen to your song – I always thought it was “Wendy”.
    hope you are feeling better soon.

  10. Just Julie says:

    Judy, I think your friend was the uncool one. So you’re not the only one who gets song lyrics wrong…I still mangle them. And I think you are a kind, smart, humble, loving person, which is the height of cool. I’m reading The Knitting Circle, by the way… xxoo

  11. Marcia says:

    Such a cute pic of you two! And the cool thing? Still haven’t figured it out. Just ask my kids. :O

  12. Just Julie says:

    Hi Marcia! So nice to hear from you. You have a very cool business so I think your cool factor kicked in without you knowing it. ๐Ÿ™‚ And kids? My three daughters are apparently getting ready to stage a “clothing intervention” on me. So I’m in the negative cool factor range I guess. God bless you! xo

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